Mark Sanchez has appropriately received an avalanche of good press this week for the job he did putting together “Jets West.” There is no question Sanchez has progressed immensely as a leader of this team and has the respect of the locker room. Those things are undeniably part of being a successful quarterback in the NFL, beyond that Sanchez has many other admirable qualities that are exactly what you want to see from your franchise quarterback —
- Hard worker – Constantly mentioned as being “first one to arrive, last one to leave” type of guys when it comes to workouts/film study. Somebody like Vince Young would be the complete antithesis of this.
- Clutch – He plays better in bigger spots, as illustrated by his success at the end of games this year, especially in the two minute drill and his four road playoff wins. Sanchez isn’t afraid of the big moment and seems to thrive in it.
- Winner – As a NFL starter, his overall record is 23-14 with four playoff wins.
- Mobility/Creativity – He has an ability to see the pass rush, break the pocket and create something with his feet.
- Good Enough Arm – He doesn’t have the strongest arm in the NFL but he can still make the necessary throws in the playbook and has a great deep ball.
Regardless of those positive traits, there is a reason Sanchez has been near the bottom of many major passing categories during his first two seasons. He still struggles with his accuracy and consistency. I am not too big into the whole body language thing, but you can see when he is struggling by the way he carries himself, which he needs to work on.I am not sure if Mark Sanchez is ever going to be an elite quarterback in the NFL. Yet, I absolutely think he has the ability to be one of the better starters in the league and win a Super Bowl, especially if he continues to be supported like he is by this Jets roster.
The Jets don’t need him throwing for 4,500 yards and 35 touchdowns next year to get where they want to be. If he can improve on his completion percentage and by improve I mean at least get it in the 58-60% range, along with continue to cut back the turnovers (he dropped from 20 INTs in year one, to 12 in year two), the Jets are going to have a very good chance to contend for a Super Bowl.
Personally, if Sanchez can give the Jets 20-25 touchdowns, 11-14 INTs, 3,500-3,750 yards, and a 58-60 completion percentage, I’d be thrilled. Maybe at some point in his career, he will progress further and put up a couple of elite years. Yet, this team is built to win right now and Sanchez is ready to take them there if takes another step in the right direction during year three.